OCR Interpretation


Bloomington herald. [volume] (Bloomington, I. T. [Iowa]) 1840-1849, December 23, 1848, Image 2

Image and text provided by State Historical Society of Iowa

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85050801/1848-12-23/ed-1/seq-2/

What is OCR?


Thumbnail for

PRESIDENTS MESSAGE.
Fallow Gitixen* of the Striate and
Hvust vf Representatives:
Under the benignant providence of Al
roifbiy God, the representatives of tne
States and of the people, are again brought
together, w deliberate for tbefpublic good
The gratitude of the nation to the »over
eign Arbiter of *»l human events,
should be corameneurate with the bound
less blessings which we enjoy. Peace,
plenty and contentment, reign throughout
our borders, and our beloved country pre
sents a sublime moral spectacle to the
world. The troubled and unsewled con
dition of some of the principal European
powers, has had a necessary tendency to
check and embarass trade and to depress
prices throughout alt commercial nations
but, notwithstanding these causes the U
ntted Slates, with their abundant products,
have felt their effects lens severely than
any other country, and all our great inter
ests are still prosperous and successful.—
In reviewing the great events of the past
year,, and contracting the agitated and dis
turbed stale of other countries with our
own tranquil and happy condition, we
may congratulate ourselves, that we are
the most favored people on the face of the
earth. While the people of other coun
tries are struggling to establish free insti
tutions, under which man may govern
himself, we are in the actual enjoyment ol
litem—a rich inheritance from our fathers
«**and while enlighiened nations of Eu
itope are convulsed and desiracted by civil
war. or intestate strife, we settle all our
political controversies by the peaceful ex
ercise of the rights of freemen, at the bal
lot box. The great republican maxim, so
deeply engraved oil the hear is of our peo
ple, that the will of the majority, con^ii
MtionaSly expressed, t-hall prevail, is our
Mire safeguard against force and violence.
It is a subject of just pride, that our
ftme and character as a nation continues
Tepidly to advance in the estimation of the
§tvilized world. To our wise and free in
Hitutiono, it is to be attributed, thit, while
©iner nations have achieved glory at the
price of the suffering, distress, and impov
erishment of their people, we have gained
our honorable position in the midst of an
winter™pied prosperity, and of an increa
sing individual comfort and happiness.
I I am happy to inform you that our re
lations with all nations are friendly and
pacific. Advantageous treaties ol com
merce have been concluded within the
list four years, with New Grenada, Peru,
tfee Two Sicilies, Belgium, Hanover, Gl
'^pnbtirgh. and Mecklenburgh. Pursuing
j6ur example the restrictive system of
Great Britain, our principal foreign cus
tomer, has been relaxed and a more lib
liral commercial policy has been adopted
1»y other enlightened nations, and our trade
has been greatly enlarged and extended.
VUI
yU'"'|i In iho rpaneCt
ef the world than at any 'former period.—
"iPo continue to occupy this proud position,
is necessary to preserve peace and faith
fully adhere to the great fundamental prin
ciple of our foreign policy—no interfer
ence in the domestic concerns of other na
tions. We recognize in all nations the
rights which we enjoy ourselves, and to
Change and reform their political institu
tions according to their own will and
pleasure. Nor do we look behind exist*
Ihg governments capable of maintaining
fheir own authority. We recognize all
#t:ch actual governments, not only from
the dictates of true policy, but from a sa
ered regard for the independence of na
tions.
While this is our settled policy, it does
not follow that we can ever be indifferent
spectators of the progress of liberal prin
ciples. The Government and the people
#f the United States witnessed, with en
thusiasm and delight, the establishment of
j|te French Republic, as we now hail the
ttforts in progress to unite the States of
Germany in a confederation similar, in
many respects, to our own federal Union.
If the great and enlightened German States,
Occupying, as they do, the central and
tommanding position in Europe, shall
•ncceed in establishing such a confedera
ted government, securing at the same lime
to the citizens of each State local Govern
ments adapted to the peculiar condition of
each—unrestricted trade and intercourse
with each other—it will be an important
«ra in human events. Whilst it will con
solidate and strengthen the power of Ger
many* it must essentially promote the
eause of peace, commerce, civilization and
constitutional liberty, ihro'out the world.
With all the Governments on this con
sent, our relations, it is believed, are
now on a more friendly and satisfactory
footing than they ever have been at any
former period.
Since the exchange of ratifications of
the treaty of peace with Mexico, our i"n«
terrourse with the Governments of the
M- xican Republic has been of the mo*t
friendly character. The Envoy Extraor
dinarv and Minister Plenipotentiary of the
Unied States to Mexico, has been receiv
ed and accredited and a diplomatic rep
resentative fri Mexico, of similar rank
has been reeeive 1 and accredited by this
Government. The amicab!e relations be
tween the two countries, which had been
suspended, have been happily restored,and
are destined, I trust, to be long preserved.
The two republics, both situated on this
continent, and with contiguous territories,
have every motive for sympathy of feeling
and of intercut*, to bind them together, in
J®rpHual amity
ra,, v n
2 condition of our foreign
Nations, render it unnecessary lor me to
4bem
y0Ur tUen!ion ore
Particularly to
It has been my constant aim and desire
to cultivate ppaCp
aB amity wit}| a
,j
na
•tons. Tranquility at home, and peaceful
relations abroad, continue the true, perma
nent policy of our country. War—the
scourge of nations-sometimes becomes
•neviUble,
u if alwavp t0 be
can be done cott»isf6m|y with the country.
rights and honor of the nation. One of
the most important results of the war into
which we were recently brought with a
While too great praise connot be be
stowed upon the officers and men who
fought our battles, yet it would be unjust
to withhold from those officers necessari
ly stationed at home, who were charged
with the duty of furnishing the army, in
proper time and at proper places, with all
the munitions of war and other supplies
necessary to make it effectual, the com
mendation to which they are entitled,—
I he credit due this class of our officers is
the greater, when it is considered that no
army in ancient or modern times, was ev
er better appointed or provided than our
army in Mexico. Operating in an ene
my s country—removed two thousand
miles from ihe seat of the Federal Govern
ment, its different corps spread over a vast
extent of territory, hundreds and ev»n
thousands of miles apart from each other
nothing shoit of the undying vigiience
and extraordinary energy of these officer?
could ha*e enabled thprn to provide the
army at all points, and in proper season,
with all that was required for the most ef
ficient service.
It is but an act of justice to declare, that
the officers in charge of the several exec
utive bureaus, all under the immediaieeye
and supervision of the Secretary of War,
performed their respective duties with
ability, energy, and efficiency.
They have reaped less of the glory of
the war, not having been personally ex
posed to its perils in battle, than their
companions in arms but without their
forecast, efficient aid and co-operation,
ihoae in the iHd would not have been
^vided with ihe ample means they pos
sessev'l, of achieving for themselves, and
their country, unfading honors, won for
both.
Whe»3 alf these facts are considered, it
may ceast* to be a matter of so much a
mazement, .how it happened that our no
ble army in Kexi'co, regulars and volun
teers, were victo.fio.'is upon every battle
field, however fe^rfn.' ihe odds against
them.
The war with Mexico has thus fully de
veloped the capacity of Kepublican Gov
ernments to prosecute, success "uHy, a nec
essary foreign war, with all it *igorusu
ally attributed to a more arbitrary forma
of government. It has been usuaJ for wri
ters on public law to impute to republics
a want of that unity and concentration of
purpose, and vigor of execution, which are
generally admitted to belong to the mo
narchical and aristocratic forms and this
feature of popular government has been
supposed to display iteelf more particular
ly in the conduct of a war carried on in an
wmen we were recently orougni wttti i|iwiui««i»»
neighboring nation, is the demonstration it I cost to the Government, or danger to ojr
has afforded of the military strength of our I liberty, we have in the bosom olourcoup
military strength
country. Before the late war with Mexi
co, European and other foreign power#,
entertained imperfect and erroneous views
of our physical strength hs a nation, and
of our ability to prosecute war, and a war
out of onr own country. They saw that
our standing army in the peace establish
ment did not exceed 10,000 men. Accus*
tomed, themselves, to maintain in peace
large standing armies, for ihe protection o(
thrones against their own subjects, as we'd
as against foreign enemies, they had not
conceived that it was possible for a nation
without such an army, well disciplined
and of long service, to wage war success
fully. They held in low refute our mili
tia, and were far from regarding them as
an effective force, unless it might be for
temporary defensive operations, when in
vaded on our own soil. The events of the
late war with Mexico have not only unde
ceived them, bnt have removed erroneous
impressions which prevails to some ex
tent, ev
en
among a portion of our own
countrymen. But this war has demonstra
ted that, upon the breaking out of hostili
ties, not anticipated, and for which no pre
parations had been made, a volunteer ar
my of citizen soldiers, equal to veteran
troops, and in numbers equal to any emer
gency, can, in a short period, be brought
into the field. Unlike what would have
occurred in any other cou.itry, we were
under no necessity of resorting to drafo
or conscriptions, on the contrary, such
was the number of volunteers who patri
otically tendered their services, that the
chief difficulty wa3 in making selections,
and di«-ri uinating who should be disap
pointed and compelled to remain at h»me.
Our citizen-soldiers are unlike those
drawn from the population. They are
composed indiscriminately, of all profess
ions and pursuits—of farmers, lawyers,
physicians, merchants,manufacturers, me
chanics and laborers—and this not only
among the officers, but the private soldiers
in the ranks. Our citizen-soldiers are un
like those of any other country, in o'her
respects they are armed, and have been
accustomed from their youth up, to han
dle and use firearms and a large propor
tion of them, especially in the we*t» rn and
more newly settled States, are expert.—
They are men who have a reputation to
maintain at home by their good conduct
in the field, and they are intelligent and
there is an individuality of character which
is found in the ranks of no other army
In battle, each private man, as well as
every officer, fights not only for his coun
try, but for glory and distinction among
his fellow-citizens, when he shall return
to civil life.
The war with Mexico lias demonstra
te^ nrti ih» uhiliry nfth« Government
to organize a numerous army, upon a sud
den call, but also to provide it with all the
munitions and necessary supplies, with
dispatch, convenience and ease, and to di
rect its operations with efficiency. The
strength of our institutions has not only
been displayed in the valor and skill of
our troops engaged in acti* e service in the
field, but in an organization of those ex
ecutive branches which were charged with
the general direction and conduct of the
war.
The war with Mexico has developed
most strongly and conspicuously, aaothr
feature of out institution*. It is, withoi
try freemen avaih'ole, in a just and nec#
nary war particularly, a standing armynf
two millions tf armed citizen-soldier^**
such as fought the battles of Mexico. I
But ouv military strength does not
sist alor,e in our capacity for extening
successful opera'ions on land. I refc to
'be Navy- an independent arm oflhe
National defence. If the services of the
Navy were not to brilliant as those ^'the
Army, in the late war with Mexty, it
was because they had no enemy .j/neet
on their own element. While theirroy
had an opportunity of performingtaore
conspicuous service the Navy persmed
their whole duty to the country, frr the
able and gallant services of the offiefs and
men of the Navy, acting independ^lly as
well as in co-operation with our tfips in
the conquest of the Californias, ik cap
ure of Vera Cruz, and the seizure
lid oc
cupation of other important posibns on
the Gulf and Pacific coast, the|iighest
praise is due. Their vigilence, enjgy and
skill, rendered the most effectivejservice
in excluding the munitions of waw*d oth
er supplies from the enemy, whie they
secured a safe entrance for ahnndh1 *«'P
plies for their own army. Our ekended
commerce was nowhere interrupt*, and
for this immunity from the evils war,
the country is indebted to the Nat.
High praise is due to the offieeiofthe
several Executive bureaus, nav yards,
and stations connected with the ervice,
all under the immediate directiorof the
Secretary of the Navy, for the idustry,
foresight and energy with whicl every
thirg was directed and furnished to give
efficiency to that branch of the svice.
By the orders which were froitime to
time issued. our vc3«eU of war,on the
Pacific and Gulf of Mexico, wer-station
ed in proper time, and proper patmn. to
co-operate efficiently with the any By
this means, their combined p*er was
brought to bear successfully upothe en
emy. The great lesults which Ive b.*en
developed and bruglit to light bjhis war,
will be of immeasurable importace in the
future progress of our country, hey will
lend powerfully to preserve us om for
eign collisions, and enab'e us pursue
uninterruptedly, onr cheris-hedpolicy
peace with all nations,
entai.gliualltances
with none.
Occupying, as w® do, a morefiomand
ing position among nations tin at any
former period our duties and «t respon
sibilities lo oursel»es aud pofrity, are
correspondingly increased. 'Us will be
the more obvious when we
a
e-sider
the
vast additions which have teJitly been
made to our territorial acquitioti, and
their great importance and vaii.
Within less than four years.he annex
ation of Texas to the Union h?tbeen con^
summated, and conflicting titlefo the Or
egon Territory south of 49 dpj. of north
latitude, being all that was itii'led on by
any of .i»v predecessors, has ben adjust
ed and New Mexico and Calomia have
been acquired by treaty. 'It area of
these several territories, accormg to the
report carefulU prepared by tl' Commis
sioner of the General Land Qice, from
the most authentic informa'ionn his pos
session, and which is herewitl transmit
ted, is 1,11)3,061 tquaremiles. or
763.559,040 acres. These estimates
show, that the territories receily acquir
ed, and over which our exclude jurisdic
tion and dominion have beer extended,
constitute a country more thn half as
large as that which wa« held the Uni
ted States before this acquisition If Ore
gon be excluded from the estiiate, there
will stiil remain within the limit of Texas.
New Mexico and Californi, 851,598
square miles, or 545,120 720 rres, being
addition equal to more ihan onfthird of all
the territory owned by the Uited States
before this acquisition, and inud ng Or
egon, nearly as great an extenof territo
ry
s the whole of Europe, Jussia only
excepted.
It is estimated by the Supertitendent of
ihe Coast Survey, in the acompanying
report, thai the extent of the sa coast of
Texas, on the Gulf of Mexicris upwards
of 400 miles of the coast of Jpper Cal
ifornia on the Pacific, 970 mies and of
Oregon, including ihe Siraitsjf Fuca, of
650 miles—making ihe who(» extent of
sea coast on the Pacific 1620, and the
whole extent on the Pacifir Aud the Gulf
of Mexico 2 020 miles. The length of
the coast of the Atlantic, froo the northern
limits of the United State* around the
Capes of Florida to the Sabne on the eas
tern boundary of Texas, is estimated to
be 3000 miles to that the addition of
sea coast, including Oregon,is very near
ly two-thirds as great as all »ossessed be
fore, and including Oregon, in addition of
1.370 miles being nearly qual to one
half the extent of coast whiai we possess
ed before. We have now three great
maritime fronts, on the Atlantic, the Gulf
of Mexico and the Pacific, naking in th"
whole an extent of coast exceeding 5,000
miles. This is the extent ol the sea coast
of the States, not including says, sounds,
and small irregularities of ihe :nain shore,
and of the sea islands. If tnese be inclu
ded, the length of the shore line of coast,
as estimated by the Superintendent of the
Coast Survey, would be 33,063 miles.
Ii would be difficult to calculate the val
ue of these immense additions lo our ter
ritorial possessions.
Texas, lyiug contiguous to the western
boundary of Louisiana, embracing within
its limits a part ol the navigable tribuiary
waters of the Mississippi, and an extensive
sea coast, could not long have remained in
the hands of a foreign power, without en
dangering the peace of our eouth-western
frontier. Her products in the vicinity of
the tributaries through these streams, run
ning into and through our territory, and
the danger of irritation and collision of in­
terests between Texas, as a forsign State'
and oursfilvea, would have been iminent,
white the embarrassment of commercial
intercourse must have been constant and
unavoidable.
Had Texas fallen into their hands, or
under the influence and control of a strong
maritime or military foreign power, as she
might have done, these dangers would
have been still greater. They have been
avoided by her voluntary and peaceful an
nexation to the United States. Texas,
from her position, was a natural and most
indispensible part of our territory. For
tunately, she has been restored to our
country, and now constitutes one of the
States of our confederacy, upon an equal
fooling with the original States. The sa
lubrity of the climate and fertility of the
soil, peculiarly adapted to the production
of «ome of our most valuable staple com
modities, and her commercial advantages,
must make her soon one of our most pop
ulous States
New Mexico, though situated in the in
terior, and without a sea coast, is known
to contain much fertile land, and to abound
in rich mines of the precious metals, and
to be capable of maintaining a large popu
lation. From its position, it is the inter
mediate and connecting territory between
our settlements and our possessions in
Texa* **nd those on the Pacific coast.
Upper California irrespective of the
vast mineral wealth rece illy developed
there, holds at this day, in point of value
and importance to ihe rest of the Union,
the same relation that Louisiana did when
that fine territory was acquired from
France 40 years ago. Extending nearly
10° of latitude along the Pacific, and em
bracing the only safe and commodious
harbor on that coast, for many hundred
miles, with a temperate climate and exten
sive interior of fertile lands, it i9 scarcely
possible to estimate its value until it shall
be brought underlie government of our
hws, and its resources fully developed.—
From its position, it must command the
rich commerce of China, of Asia, of the
Islands of the Pacific, of Western Mexico,
of Central Ainerca, the South American
Stales, and of the Kus&ian possessions
bordering on that ocean. A great empo
rium will, doubtless, speedily arise on the
California coast, which may he destined
to ri/al in importance New Orleans itself.
The depot of the vast commerce which
mu«t exi-t on ihe Pacific, will be at some
point on ihe Bay of Sin Francisco, anil
will occupy ihe same relation to ihe whole
western coast of that ocean a* New Or
leans does lo the Valley of the Mississip
pi and the Gulfof Mexico. Totliij depot
our numerous whale ships will resort with
their cargoes, to trnde. refit, and obtain
supplies. This trade will largely contri
bute io build up a city which will soon be
come a centre of a gieat and rapidly In
creasing commerce. Situated on a safe
harbor, sufficiently capacious for all the
navies, a? well as the marines of the world,
and convenient to excellent timber, for
ship building, owned by the United Stales
it must become our great western depot.
It was known that mines of the pre
cious menls existed to a consideroble ex
tent in California at the time of its occu
pation. Recent discoveries render it prob
able, that these mines are more extensive
a n v a u a e a n w a s a n i i a e I e
account* of 'he abundance of e^ld in that
territory are of such an extraordinary
character as would scarcely command be
lief were thev no corroborated by the au
thentic report of c.fiiccrs of the public service, who
have visiteil the mineral disiricts and derived the
farts which they detail from personal observation.
Reluctant to credit lue reports in general circulation
as to tho quantity of gold, the officer commanding
our forces in California visited the mineral district
in Ju!\ list for the purpose of obtaining accurate
information on ihe subject. His report to the War
Department of the result of his examination, arid
the fact* obtained on the spot, are herewith laid be
fore Congress. When he visited the country there
were about 4,000 persons engaged in collecting gold
There is every reason believe that the numler
has (since been augmer.ted The explorations al
ready made warrant the belief that the supply i«
very large and that gold is found tn various points
in an extensi"e district of country.
Information received from officers and other
sources, though not so full and minute, confirm the
account of ihe commander of our military lorce in
California. It appears, also, from these reports, that
mines of
quicksilver
are found in the vicinity otthe
gold region. One of them is now being worked,
and is believed to be one of the most productive in
the world.
The effects produced by the discovery of
these rich mineral deposits, and success which
has attended ihe labors of those who have re
sorted to them, have produced a surprising
change in ih« state of affairs in California,—
Labor commands a most exorbitant price and
all other pursuits hut that of seardHog'»f»r
precious metals, are abandoned. Nearly the
whole male population of tho country have
gone to the gold district. Ships arriving on
ihe coast are deserted by their crews and voy
ages enspened for ihe waut qf sailors. Onr.
commanding rffieer iheto entertains apprehen*
sions ihal soldiers cannot be^ kept in the ser
vice withon' a large increase of pay Deser
tions in his command have become frequent,
and he recommends that iliose who shall with
stand ihe strong temptatioti^t^d remain faith
ful, shall be rewarded.
This abundance of gold. $nd ihe all engross
ing pursuit of it, has already cau«^d inCalifor
nia an oopaecedented rise in the necessaries
of life.
That we may Ihe more speedily and ful
ly avail ourselves of the undeveloped wealth
of these mine?, it is deemed of vast impor
tance, that a branch of the mint the United
States, be authorized to he established during
the present season in California. Among oth
er signal advantages whieh would result from
such an establishment, would hethe raising the
gold to its par value in lhat territory. A branch
mint of the United Slates at thai great com
mercial depot of the wrist coast would convert
into our coin, not only the gold dirived from
our rich mines, but also the bullion and spee'e
which our commerce may bring from the
whole west coast. Central and South America
The west coast of America, and th« adjacent
interior, embraces ihe best mines of New
Mexico, New Grenada, Central America,
Chili and Peru.
The bullion and specie drawn from these
countries, and f-epecially from those of New
Mexico and Peru, to an amount in value of
many millions of dollars are now annually di
e e a n a i e y e s i s e
e
aiu lo her own ports, to be received or used
by her to sustain her National Banks, and thus
contribute to increase hei ability to command
so much of the commerce of the world. If a
branch mint be established at the great com
mercial point of that coast, a vast amount of
bullion and specie would flow thither, to be
recoived mid pass thence to New Orleans and
New York, and other Atlantic cities. The
amount of oor constitutional currency at home
would be greatly increased, while its circula
tion would be promoted. It i9 well known
to our merchants trading to Chiua and west
coast of America, that great inconvenience and
loss are etpeiienced from the fact, that our
coins are not current at their par value in those
countries.
The powers of Europe, removed from the
west coast of America by the Atlantic ocean,
which intervenes, and by the tedious and
dangerous navigation around the cape of the
continent of America, can never successfully
compete with the United States in the rich
and extensive cemmerce which is opened to
us. at so much less cost, by the acquisition of
California.
The vast importance and commercial advan
tages of California has Heretofore remained
undeveloped by the Government of the coun
try to which it constituted a part. Now that
this fine province is a part of our country, all
of the States of the Union, some more imme
diately than others, are deeply interested in
the speedy developement of its wealth and re
sources. No section of our country is more
interested, or will be more benefitted than the
commercial, navigational and manufacturing
interests of th* eanttSrn States. Our planting
and farming interest*, in evt ty part of ihe Un
ion, wilt be greatly benefitted by it. As our
commerce and navigation are enlarged and ex
tended, our exports of agricultural products,
and our manufactures, will be increased, and
in the new .markets thus opened they cannot
fail to command remuneration aud a profitable
price.
The acquisition of California and New Mex
ico the settlement of the Oregon boundary
and the annexation ofTexa*, extending to the
Rio Grande, are results which combined, are
of grea'er consequence, and will add more to
the strength aud wealth of the nation than any
which have preceeded them since the adop
tion of ihe Constitution.
But to effect these results, not only Califor
nia but New Mexico must be brought under
the ct ntr
i
of regular organized government.
TIih exiling condition at California and that
part of Mew Mexico lying west of the Kio
Grande and without ihe limits of Texas, impe
riously demand that Congress should, at-its
present session, organize territorial govern
ment over them.
Upon the exchange of the ratification of the
treaty ol peace with Mexico, on the thirteenth
of May, ihe temporary government which had
been established over New Mexico ceased lo
exist. Impressed with the necessity of es
tablishing territorial government over them I
recommend to the favorable consideration of
Congress in my message communicating the
ratified treaty of peace, on the sixth ol July
last, and iheir aiMion at that session. Con
gre«a adjorned without making any provision
tor their government. The inhabitants, by
the transfer of their country, had become entl
t'ed to itie henefiis of our laws and Constitu
tion. ^nd yet were left without any regular or
ganizod government. Since that time a very
limited power possessed by the Executive,
has been exercised to preserve and protect
them from (lie inevitable consequeucea of a
state of anarchy.
The or lv Government which remained was
that established by military authority during
the w£r Regarding this as a de far.to Gov
ernment, and that by the presumed consent of
the inhabitants, ii might be continued tempo
rarily, they were advised to conform and sub
mit to it for the short intervening period be
fore Congress again assembled, and could leg
islate on the subject.
The views entertained by the Executive on
this point, are contained in a communication
of the Secre'ary of State, dated on the 7th of
October last, which was forwarded for publi
cation to California and New Mexico, a copy
of which is herewith transmitted. The small
military force of the regular army which was
serving within the limits of the acquired ter
riU'rieR, at the close of the war, remained in
them, additional forces have been ordered there
f: ttin protection of the inhabitants, and to
preserve and secure ths rights and interests of
the United States.
No revenue has been, or could be, collected
at the ports in California, because Congress
failed to authorize the establishment of Cus
tom Houses, or the appointment of officers for
lhal purpose. The Secretary of tbe 1 reasury,
by circular letter addressed to Collectors of
the Customs on the 7th day of October last,
(a copy of which is transmitted,) exercised all
the power with which he was invested by law.
In pursuance of the act ot the 14th of Au
gust last, extending the benefit of the Post
Office laws io the people of California, the
Post Master General has appointed two agents
who have proceeded, the one to Calitornia and
he other lo Oregon, with authority to make
the necessary arrangements for carrying its
provisions into effect.
The monthly line of mail steamers, from
Panama, has been required to deliver and take
mails ai San Diego Monterey and San Fran
cisco.
These mail steamers, connected at the Isth
mus of Panarna^JBith the line of mail steam
ers, on the Atlantic between New York and
Chagres, will establish a regular commercial
route with California.
1'is our solemn duty to provide, with the
least possible delay for New Mexico and Cali
fornia, regular organized governments. The
causes of the failure to do this, at ihe last ses
sion of Congress, are well known and deeply
to be regrete'd. With the opening prospects,
and increased National greatness, which the
requisition of these rich territories atforos,
how irrational it would be to forego, and to
reject, these advantages by the agitation of a
domestic question, which is coeval with the
existence of our Government itself, and to en
danger, hy internal strifes, geographical divi
iontf and heated contests for poliical power,
or for any other cause, the harmony of the glo
rious union of our confederation—that union
which binds us together as one people, and
which, for sixty years, has been our shelter and
protection against every danger.
In the eyes of the world and posterity, how
trivial and insignificant will be all our internal
divisions and struggles, compared with this
union of the Slates with all its valor and all
its countless blessings. No patriot would fer
ment or exeiie geographical and sectional di
visions. No lover of his country would de
lioeraiely calculate ihe value of the Union,—
Future generations would look in amazement
upon the folly of such a course. Other na
tions at the present moment, would look upon
it with astonishment, and sttch of those as de
sire to maintain and perpetuate thrones aud
monarchical or aristocratic principles will
view it with exultation and,delight because in
it they will see the element of faction which
hey hope must u' tmately overthrow oursya
». t«rs i« great example of a prosptg*
'.A.-' J*
oua and free self-goveriwf command
ing the admiration and faitaUaft
t|j
j0fgta
of freedom throughout the wwld.
How aolemo, therefore, theduty«4o* fo.
pressive ihe call upon ue# sod upon all pam
of onr eountry—to cultivate patriotic spirit
harmony, good fellowship, compromise end
mutual concession, in the administration of
the incomparable system of Koveraawot fort&.
ed by our fathers in the mMat ef tbe moat in
superable difficulties, aod transmitted to ua
with the injunction lhat we ahould enjoy Ur
blessings, and hand it down unimpaired to.
those that may come after us,
In view of the high and responeible da ties
we owe to ourselves and mankind, I trust you
may be able to approach the adjeetmeoi ol the
only domestic question which seriously threat
ens or probably ever can threaten, to disttufe
the harmony and auoceasful operation of otfr
system.
The immensely valuhle possession of Ne*
Mexico and Calfornia, are already inhabited
by a considerable population, attracted by thau
great fertility—their mineral wealth—their
commercial advantages, and the salubrity of
the climate. Emigrants from the older Statia
in great numbers, are already preparing to
seek new homes iu these inviting regions.
Shall the dissimilarity of domestio instiie
tions in the different States prevent us fra*
providing for them suitable governments!-*
These institutions existed at the adoption
of the constitution but the obstacles whieb
they interposed, were overcome by that spirit
of compromise which is invoked* 1a coaflty
of opinion* or of interest, real or imaginary,
between different sections of oor country, nei
ther can justly demartd all which itoMgHdfc.
sire to obtain each, in the true spirit of ant
institutions, shujld concede aometbias to ihe
other.
Our gallant forces in the Mexican war, by
whose patriotism'and|unparalleled d«eds of
arms, we obtained possessions as an indemni
ty for our just demands against Mexico, were
composed of citizens' who belonged no Siai*
or section of our Union they were men from
slaveholdir.g and non-slaveholding States frum
the north and from the south, and from the
east and from the west. They were compan*
ions in arms, and fellow citizens of the same
common country, engaged in the same common
cause. YV hen prosecuting that war, they ware
brethren and friends, and shared alike with
each uther common toils, dangers, and suffer
it.gs. Now, when their worIHeended—when
peace is restored, and they llturn again ta
their homes—put off the hw$ttnifnie of war,
take their places in society and resume their
pursuits in civil life, surely a Vpirit of harmo
ny aud cencession, and of equal regard for the
rights of all, arid of all sections of the Union,
onyht io prevail in providing Governments fat
ti e acquired Territories—the fruits of their
common service. The whole people of the
United States, and of every State, contrib
uted to pay the expenses of that war and It
would not be just for any one section to s&
elude another Irom participation in the re
quired territory. This would not be in accord
ance with ihe just principles of Government
which ihe frauiers ol our Constitution adopted-
The question is believed lo be rather ab
stract than practical, whether slavery ever can
or would extst in any portion of the acquired
territory, even were it left io ihe option of
the slave holding Stales themselvea. From
the nature or the climate and productions ef
the country, in much the larger portion of it)|i
is certain it could never exist and, in the 0*
mainder, would not.
But, however, this may be, the question in
volving as it does, a principle of equality of,
rights of the separate and several Su es, ii
equal copartners in ihe cout'ederaoy, should
noi be disregarded.
In organizing governments over their ter
ritories, no duties imposed on Congress by llts
constitution require thai they should legislate
on the subject of slavery, while their power
to do so is not only seriously questioned, bat
denied, by many of Ihe soundest expounders
of that instrument. Whether Congress shall
legislate or not, the people of the acquired
territories, when assembled in convention, will
possess ihe whole aud exclusive power to
termine whether slavery shall, or shall notei«
ist within their limits. If Congress shall ab«
stain from interfering in the question, the peu*
pie of these territories will be left free to adjost
it as|they think proper, when they apply for ad
mission as States into tho Union. No enact
ment of Congress could restrain the people of
any of the sovereign States of the Union, old
or new, slaveholding or non-slaveholding,from
determining tbe apprehension of which were
entertained by some of our statesmen in the
earlier period of our government—that otir
system was incapable of operating with sulfi*
cient energy and success over largely extend
ed territorial limits. Those who maintained
that if this system was adop'ed, it would fall
to pieces by its own weakness, have been die
appointed by our experience. By the division
of power between tho Siiloi and
Government, the latter is found to operate with
as much energy at the extremes as in the ceo
ire. It is as sufficient in the remotest of th*
30 States which now compose the Union, ss
it was in the 13 Statea which formed our con
federacy. Indeed, it may be doubted,
er, if onr present population had
been
confined
within the limits of the original 13 Statable*
tendency to concentration would not have been
such ss to have encroached upon the essential
reserved right of the. Statea, and Ibos row.
the Federal Government a widely different oa$
praettcaHy, from what it is in theory, and wm
intended to be by its framers. So far from en
tertaining apprehenaions of tbe safety of oif
system by the extensions of our tsrritory, tM'
belief is confidently entertained, 'hat each n«JN
Slate give atrength and additional
tees for the preservation of the Union iliej
In pursuance of the provisions of the J*
Article ot the treaty of peace.
its, and settlement with the Republic of
ico, and of ihe Act of July 29th, 1848, cla!P»
of our citizens which has been already
dated, and decided agateat tbe Mexican Re
public, amounting, with the interest there
to $*2,0*23,832,51, have been liquidated
paid. t'bere remains to be paid of these ci»i®»
$74,192.76.
Congress, at its last session, having
no provision for executing the 15th Ar'ic
the Treaty, by which the U. S.
make satisfaction for the 'unliquidated
of our citizens against Mexico, on an .alD0®T*
exceeding $3,250,000, the subject is
recommended to your tavorable oonsi e
The exchange of ratification in the
with Mexico took place on the 30th of
1948, YVithioone year after that timet
i Commissioner and Surveyor, which eac
eminent stipulated to appoint, are requ
meet ''at the Fort of San Diego and
lo run and mark the said boundary
whole course to the mouth of tbe Kio
del None." It will be seen from this p«wjr
ion that the period within Which
lhe#a
veyors of the respective governments
meet at San Diego, will expire oo the iw
May, 1819. Coogress, at the close n
last session made an appropriation for
pense of running and marking the he
i line bereft counUjJMb but did

xml | txt